Silver Talkies – November 2014 – TOI

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Age is no barrier to unleash creativity


BENGALURU: When Asha’s eldest son got married, she passed on her most-prized treasure — a wide range of recipes — to her daughter-in-law. “As he was going to settle abroad, I wondered what to gift my daughter-in-law that she will cherish. I wrote 200 pages of Konkani and other south Indian recipes with anecdotes. In 2007, a well-wisher suggested that I should share my knowledge with the world, so I started writing a book. My first book was released in 2011,” she said. 
Asha, 66, is the author of The Konkani Saraswat Cookbook, a bestseller for which she has been felicitated in Atlanta, US.

Like Asha, Nirmala Murli Mohan’s life also twined around designs, but of a different kind. Married to a jeweler, she developed a passion for designing — jewels, her husband’s store and dresses. Finally, she found the perfect match in fused glass designing.

“When I visited Europe, I saw fused glass art there. Glass has always fantasized me. I learnt the art, but back in India, it was like I was speaking in Hebrew. However, my children gifted me a kiln from the US that helped me to start with. I never thought of selling my art work. Now, because of my presence in the social media, fused-glass art is starting to get attention,” said Nirmala, 61.

On Saturday, Asha, Nirmala and many others came together for a celebration of senior entrepreneurs —Anandam — at St Marks Cathedral. It was a platform for senior citizens who are hitting sixers with their agility and passions. It was also a day for youngsters and kids to come and shake a leg with grannies or taste snacks made by them.

The event was organized by Suchetadhama, Fortis hospital and Silver Talkies. Suchetadhama is a not-for-profit organization that brings together senior citizens who either have their own businesses or are willing to engage themselves with something they know — like Meena Shashi, 66, and her Mother’s Kitchen.

For Meena, pickle making was just a household work close to her heart. “Then one day, some neighbours asked me to make sweets and snacks for some function. Later, they came back suggesting that I should start a business of it. I started on a very small scale, but now with my sister Vaishali, 58, on board, Mother’s Kitchen makes good food and people happy. My daughter helps me get to such fairs or platforms where I can meet customers directly,” she said.

The senior citizens not only showcased their art and recipes, but also grooved on the stage and networked with others.

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